LADY HAWKS HOST BETHUNE-COOKMAN MONDAY AT 5:30 IN HYTCHE
Feb. 15, 2010
PRINCESS ANNE, Md. - The University of Maryland Eastern Shore women's basketball team (8-12, 5-5 MEAC), returns home to begin its final homestand of the regular season, a four-game stint, starting with the Bethune-Cookman Lady Wildcats Monday at 5:30 p.m. If UMES tops the Lady Wilcats and Norfolk State defeats Howard Saturday, The Lady Hawks move into a tie for fifth place in the MEAC standings.
LAST TIME OUT: April McBride scored 22 points and added 10 rebounds for her sixth double-double of the season but UMES matched its smallest offensive output with 46 points in a 76-46 loss at North Carolina A&T on ESPNU on Monday. UMES never led in the game and trailed, 37-24, at halftime. The Lady Aggies began the second half on a 16-6 run over the first five minutes to go up, 53-30, and put the game away.
SCOUTING B-CU: Bethune-Cookman comes into play Monday at 12-11 overall and 7-4 in the MEAC. The Lady Wildcats are coming off a 57-53 loss at Delaware State Saturday to end a five-game winning streak. B-CU boasts two players who average over 10 points per game. Demetria Franks leads the team with a 13.5 scoring average followed by Jalisa Isaac at 10.3. Sarah Bolden is the Lady Wildcats' top rebounder at 8.1 per game, putting her fifth in the league in that category. B-CU is coached by Vanessa Inge in her 11th season on the sidelines in Daytona Beach, Fla. She holds a 144-163 overall at the school.
B-CU-UMES ALL-TIME SERIES:
Monday's meeting between Bethune-Cookman and UMES will be 52nd all-time in the series since the 1983-84 season. The Lady Wildcats hold a 27-24 advantage in those games. UMES won 10 of 11 contests against B-CU from from 2004-05 to last season. Bethune-Cookman took the first meeting of the season at Moore Gymnasium in Daytona Beach, Fla., 56-55, back on Jan. 18.
MCBRIDE REACHES 1,500-POINT PLATEAU: With her layup with 18:07 to play in the first half Saturday (Feb. 6), senior April McBride tallied her 1,500th career point at Norfolk State to make the score 7-0. The New Rochelle, N.Y., native now has 1,518 which is second all-time to 1999 UMES Athletic Hall of Fame inductee Monica Felder (`89) who finished her four years at the school with 2,008 points.
LADY HAWKS IMPROVING DEFENSIVELY: As of Feb. 11, UMES ranked 156th out of 332 NCAA Division I teams in scoring defense at 62.7 points per game. UMES is also 139th in field-goal percentage defense (39.1) and is fifth in the MEAC in the category. On the other side of the coin, UMES has been outscored by an average of 4.0 points a game, which is 233rd nationally. In the season-opening loss at UMBC, the Retrievers made 14 3-point shots, which is the 17th-best total in Division I to date.
UMES CONTROLLING THE BOARDS: UMES is second in the MEAC in rebounding margin, outrebounding the opposition by 2.1 boards per game. The Lady Hawks trail only North Carolina A&T in that category in the conference. UMES is 110th in the country, according to the latest national statistics and are 6-3 this season when holding a rebounding edge.
UMES AFTER A WIN SINCE 2002-03 SEASON: The Lady Hawks come into action with a record of 58-32 (.644) following a win since the 2002-03 season. UMES is 2-5 after a win this season. The best record the team posted in that span was in 2007-08 when it was 12-4.
HEAD OF THE CLASS: As of Feb. 15, senior April McBride was leading all MEAC seniors in rebounding. McBride is averaging 8.6 rebounds per game which is good for fourth overall in the conference. She is averaging 3.4 offensive rebounds per game which is fifth best in the league and is also fourth in the MEAC in defensive rebounding (5.2 per game).
SANDERS MAKING AN IMMEDIATE IMPACT: Redshirt freshman forward Chelsea Sanders is second on the Lady Hawks in scoring after 20 games at 11.1 points per game, ranking her 12th in the MEAC. She is 20th in rebounding at 5.3 and has made 1.1 3-pointers per game and is 12th in the conference in that category while currently being 13th in 3-point percentage (24.0).
MCBRIDE AMONG MEAC LEADERS: In addition to Chelsea Sanders' solid numbers, April McBride is fourth in scoring average with 16.3 points per game. McBride is ninth in field-goal percentage at 45.7 percent as well as 14th in free-throw percentage at 71.6 percent. She is also 12th in blocks per game (0.8). Finally, McBride is fourth in the MEAC in steals at 2.2 per game.
TWENTY-SIXTH CAREER 20-POINT GAME: In scoring 22 points against North Carolina A&T on Feb. 8, April McBride registered the 26th 20-point scoring effort of her career at UMES. Last season, she recorded 10 20-point games. During her sophomore campaign, she notched eight 20-point games and in her first year at UMES she had one 20-point effort.
AGBASI'S BLOCK PARTY: Sophomore Adobi Agbasi leads UMES with 23 blocked shots in just 15 games played this season. The Columbus Ga., product missed the first five games of the season with a shoulder injury, but since returning to the lineup, she has posted three of the top six single-game blocks records in the MEAC this season. Agbasi earned her first career start at Norfolk State on Feb. 6 and responded with a season-high five swats in 29 minutes. The five blocks are the top single-game mark in the conference to date. She leads the league in blocks per game at 1.5.
MORTON WORKING HARD FOR THE LADY HAWKS: NBA statistics guru Harvey Pollack, inventor of numerous basketball statistical categories, maintains what he calls the "working man's stat," which is when a player records at least one of every statistical category in the box score. In the season-opener at UMBC, junior Casey Morton achieved a working woman's stat. She was: 2-of-10 from the field; 1-of-7 from three-point land; 7-of-10 at the line; had one offensive rebound; three defensive rebounds; 12 points; one assist; one block; three steals.McBride joined the club against American on Jan. 4. She was: 4-of-11 from the field; 3-of-4 from 3-point land; 3-of-4 from the line; one offensive rebound; six defensive rebounds; 14 points; two assists; two blocks; four steals.
PROTECTING THE HYTCHE CENTER: The Lady Hawks have managed a winning record at home the last seven years. Overall, UMES is 50-36 at the W.P. Hytche Athletic Center since the 2002 campaign. For comparison, the Hawks are 39-50 on the road since the 2002 season. In 2007, the Lady Hawks had nine wins at home. Since Fred Batchelor's arrival on campus, the Lady Hawks 38-26 at home. The Hawks won their final two games last season at home.
MORTON: 233 AND COUNTING: Casey Morton tied a career-high with seven assists for the second time this season against N.C. Central on Jan. 27. She ranks ninth in the conference, averaging 2.9 dimes per game and has 58 total this season. Morton has recored at least five helpers in three of the last five games and has 233 career assists.
UMES AFTER A LOSS SINCE 2002-03 SEASON: With the Lady Hawks' win against Norfolk State Saturday, they improved to 41-66 (.383) following a loss since the 2002-03 season. UMES is 6-5 after a loss this season. The best record the team posted in that span was in 2005-06 when it was 7-5.
THREE IN A ROW?: The Lady Hawks are hoping for their third straight winning season under head man Fred Batchelor. UMES finished 15-14 last season and went 17-13 the year prior. Since 1983-84, the Lady Hawks have never had three straight winning seasons.
MCBRIDE NAMED TO MEAC PRESEASON FIRST TEAM: Senior April McBride was named to the Preseason MEAC First Team, as voted upon by conference head coaches and sports information directors. McBride has led the Lady Hawks in scoring and rebounding in each of her three seasons at UMES. McBride was named First Team All-MEAC following her sophomore and junior seasons.
HAWKS PICKED SECOND IN MEAC: Conference head coaches and SIDs voted UMES second in the preseason behind predicted league- champion North Carolina A&T. The jump is a dramatic one for the Hawks, who were predicted to finish sixth in the MEAC last season. In 2007, the Hawks were picked to finish seventh in the league.
DOWNTOWN DIFFICULTIES: The Lady Hawks are having trouble connecting from 3-point range through 20 games. UMES is shooting just 24.2 percent (73-for-302) from beyond the arc, which is last in the conference. The statistic is especially troubling considering that UMES is taking 28 percent of its shots from 3-point range. UMES hit 2-of-9 from beyond the arc versus Iona and just 1-of-8 against Delaware State. The Lady Hawks followed that up with a 3-of-18 showing against Mississippi Valley State and were 1-of-11 versus Georgia State.UMES attempted a season-high 40 3-pointers at UMBC (9-for-40).
LAST TIME OUT AGAINST BETHUNE-COOKMAN: April McBride scored a team-high 16 points and added 11 rebounds for a double-double but Bethune-Cookman nipped UMES, 56-55, at Moore Gymnasium on Jan. 18. Junior Casey Morton had a chance for the go-ahead bucket on the last possession but her runner in the lane was no good.
HAWKS COME AT YOU IN WAVES: Of the 15 players that have seen the floor this season, 10 are averaging more than 10 minutes per game. Six players are averaging at least 15 minutes per contest and five players are averaging at least 20 minutes per game. No UMES player is averaging more than April McBride's 30.4 per night.
MCBRIDE: CENTURY WOMAN: Senior April McBride played her 100th career game at Bethune-Cookman on Jan. 18. As one of only two seniors on this year's squad McBride will be the only UMES player achieve the feat in 2009-10. Junior Casey Morton should reach the milestone next season, having played 78 career games.
MAGIC MAN RETURNS AS COACH: After graduating from UMES in 2008, Richard "Magic" Ashley returns as a graduate assistant coach for the Lady Hawks in 2009-10. He previously worked for the team from 2006-08 as the student assistant and the assistant strength and conditioning coach. Following graduation, he was the top assistant coach for the William Penn High School boy's varsity squad, helping guide the team to a state title.
SENIOR MCBRIDE RETURNS TO ANCHOR HAWKS: Senior April McBride is one of the top returnees in the MEAC. She paced the 2008-09 Hawks in scoring (16.2) and rebouning (8.6). McBride ranked fifth in the MEAC in scoring and third in rebounding. She also finished eighth in the conference in field-goal percentage (42.9), third in free-throw percentage (79.1), tied for 12th in the league in steals (1.6) and fifth in blocks (1.2). McBride scored in double figures in 22 of the 25 games she played in. McBride led the Hawks in scoring in 17 games last season. She poured in a career-best 29 points against Morgan State on Jan. 31.
MORTON IS BACK: Every star needs a compliment and thats exactly what Casey Morton provides for McBride. Morton was the second leading scorer last season, averaging 11.0 points per game. Morton appeared in all 29 games and was in the starting lineup for 28 of the contests. Morton connected on 38 3-pointers, second most on the team behind Tiffany Reid (42). Morton proved to be an excellent fascilitator, leading the Hawks with 90 assists. She also led the team in steals with 47 last season. Two years ago, during his freshman campaign, she was named the MEAC Rookie of the Year.
THIRTY-NINE GAMES IN TWO YEARS IN DOUBLE DIGITS: Senior April McBride scored in double figures in 39 games over the last two seasons. She has scored in double figures in 81 games in her three-plus years at UMES. Casey Morton is second in career double-figure games with 45.Morton tallied a season-high 16 points in UMES first win of the season against Delaware State.
REBOUNDING PROWESS FROM THE GUARD SPOT: Casey Morton proved last season that she is one of the best rebounding guards in the MEAC. At 5-foot-9, Morton ranked second on the Hawks last season, averaging 3.9 boards per game. She totaled 113 rebounds. During the 2007-08 campaign, Morton totaled 107 rebounds (3.7). In the season-opening loss at UMBC, Morton pulled a season-best six boards against Delaware State.
BOMBS AWAY FROM BEYOND THE ARC: UMES attempted 602 3-pointers last season. For comparison, the Hawks' opponents attempted just 307 long balls. It is interesting to note that Tiffany Reid (141) and Josephine McLane (138), who are not on the 2009-10 roster, attempted the most from beyond the arc. Casey Morton was third in attempts with 124. The Hawks' opponents (.308) had a better 3-point percentage than UMES (.284). In the season-opening loss at UMBC, the Lady Hawks fired 40 3-pointers in 40 minutes, connecting on nine (22.5 percent).
LADY HAWKS HURT ON BOARDS: UMES was badly outrebounded against UMBC, allowing the Retrievers to pull in 54 boards while totaling only 38. April McBride pulled down a team-high eight boards. It was the first time the Lady Hawks had been outrebounded by 10 or more since February of last season, when Florida A&M won the battle on the glass, 45-34.
NEXT UP FOR UMES: UMES hosts Florida A&M Wednesday Jan. 17 at 5:30 p.m. in a makeup game due to the postponement of the game on Saturday. UMES topped Florida A&M, 47-43, on Jan. 16 at the new Al Lawson Center in Tallahassee, Fla.